Pushing up daises.
You get it right?
Never buy a used ibook on ebay. At least I won't again.
So, until further notice, to my friends who have my number, or to all of
you nice people out there, my emailing abilities will be sporadic.
Right now I am on the house PC, and it is used mostly by Karen as she Skypes
and Etsy's at odd times and my notebook was supposed to free us both up to do things online
without interfering with the other.
Sorry. When I have the funds to replace my dead, moribund fuck up of a notebook
I'll be back as usual.
Don't shed on the furniture while I'm gone, okay?
Sunday, May 22, 2011
People have been lately writing me a lot lately and asking for considerably cheaper commissioned work. They invariably comment that they wish they could afford my prices.
The sad fact is that even at a thousand dollars I barely make under half of that. Why?
Well I am "self employed". Freelance.
The average commission takes me two weeks or more give or take. This is seven days a week, Six to ten hours a day. Frankly, I work my balls off. I don't "slog off" anything. I take what I do for me, and for you very, very seriously. I always deliver. Always.
At say five hundred a week out of that comes a lovely thing the government likes to call, "Self employment tax" as well as social security tax, plus state tax. Add that with the cost of the best materials I can afford plus Eidolon's cut and I end up with a whisker over minimum wage.
Viewed this way, a thousand turns into a deal. I need at least one commission a month to make ends meet and then just barely. I am not by any means some prick swimming in filthy loot.
If it wasn't for quarterly royalty payment from past work, I'd be homeless. That's a fact.
The reason I now have top shelf representation is because Eidolon works very, very hard on ensuring my future as a free artist with the ability to grow personally and professionally.
I need somebody watching my back if I am to progress. I owe a lot to Ryan and Eidolon. If not for them, my book "Fracture of the Universal Boy would never have seen the light of day, or if it did, it would have been a pitiful shadow of what you will all be able to purchase come September.
I would dearly love to be able to give you all wonderful images for nothing or next to, that's just honestly who I am. But reality bites and the cost of just being alive can be staggering. Believe me, I have no television, no cell phone, no ipad, no digital camera, no swimming pool, or ATV to go gallivanting about the woodlands. I haven't bought a pair of shoes in two years and I wear basically thrift store finds.
But, that's okay as long as my family is taken care of and there is decent food on the table.
If you want a low, (very low compared to other artists.) priced drawing from me, please come see me at San Diego or someplace like it. Hey, I know I have been less than visible these last few years, but that is changing very rapidly. I love to meet you, all of you people who have supported me over the years, and that being said, is why I will often draw you something at cons or in stores for next to nothing. I truly appreciate it. I need you all very much.
Now, if you want something from me, just goggle EIDOLON FINE ARTS, and write to Ryan and ask....if I can, I will. Okay? Promise.
With much love,
Saturday, May 21, 2011
To illustrate the massive disconnect between me and the rest of the comics world, a very intense and personal thing happened this week that just today I learned of.
The passing of Jeffery Catherine Jones.
It was in nineteen eighty,(four?) five I bought three books from, at least to my experience, a new and wonderful thing: the comics shop. Up until that point in time I had no idea something like that existed. It was as if a bomb was detonated in my head. I simply couldn't grasp it. That day I went a little crazy and spent what for my at that time was an enormous amount of money on three book.
The Adventures of Luther Arkwright, and issue of Epic Illustrated, and The Studio.
My world was never the same.
I had to do THAT...what they did. Make beautiful comics and paintings and drawings and anything else that I could manage. From that experience came The Puma Blues.
I think if you are reading this you pretty much know the rest.
It was in the very late nineties that I hit my personal wall and broke into thousands of little bits.
In an effort to work my way back to wholeness, I emailed Jeffery Catherine, basically pleading to help. She did. For a period of about a month I would ask questions about painting and she would write back, sometimes terse, other times with obvious compassion. I valued those emails as a starving man would food. A banquet of new ideas, things undreamed and the possibility that I could indeed be someday even better than I was. I owe a huge debt of thanks to her that I suddenly can never repay, ever. And the thing that really troubles me is I didn't know until today.
How could I not know? Why didn't somebody tell me?
It was through her I had the absolute nerve to write to who is now someone I consider a friend and in an odd, informal way, a kind of offhand mentor, Barry Windsor-Smith.
The more I think the bigger the debt grows.
A sad thing: when I moved out to the Mid West from New England in '03, I had to leave my library behind in what I thought was safe keeping until I was settled. I had an extensive library of Jones's work that I miss terribly some days. You see, moving a house full of stuff is paid for by the pound, and pound for pound books weight a LOT. I only had so much to spend and the books had to stay. I had a lot of books. Well, they disappeared, along with a huge resource of memories and comfort that I cannot replace.
She's dead and there is no replacement. It's rather fitting.
We must go on without a little less light. And damn it to hell, the world is getting pretty dim these days.
I have taken the day off. I should be working. I just keep thinking of that day when I got an answer back.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Today both my dogs went into surgery to remove tumors.
The local vet has kindly extended a line of credit because we can't pay for it.
I NEED A COMMISSION. MAYBE TWO. Please consider it. I'll entertain any reasonable request what so ever. Yeah, even fucking Batman. I mean it. I'll temporarily reduce prices also.
Those of you who know me know how dearly I love my girls. Just right to Ryan Graff C/O
Eidolon Fine Arts and ask. It's a piece of cake. Really.
From my heart,
Saturday, May 14, 2011
I have just put the final post, including the final image of the "Burning Brightly" piece up at the "working" site. It is not overly long, but it does contain a surprise or two. Pop over and check it out.
I would appreciate it and so would the tigers.
Friday, May 13, 2011
I painted a portrait of my father today. It left me in tears.
My father passed away over a decade ago. We left each other on excellent terms.
Which to be frank, was not always the case. I am deeply thankful, we came to understand each other in the years before he died.
It happened quite out of nowhere, largely due to the fact I had put a toned ground on a piece of work I am doing in between major projects and I didn't want to have to sit around for several hours waiting for it to set enough to continue. I had, several years ago, roughed out, (very rough indeed.) a small-ish canvas planning on doing a portrait of him for myself. As a completely impulse decision I dug around and found it with a couple of orphans in a corner and just started with the limited colors I had laid out for the other thing.
The thing I wonder about most is the fact I barely remember painting it. It just seemed to appear out of thin air. And, it's the man himself without a doubt.
When it was over I was shaking and in tears.
I was so involved in the process I lost myself to the point of nearly negating conscience thought running on almost total instinct. This has happened only a handful of times with fingers left over in the thirty odd years I have been painting. You will never see it, except perhaps after I am myself dead and someone puts out a "life's work" book. That's the way it should be.
I feel blessed.
ps: the final "burning brightly" tiger blog and image will be up sometime tomorrow.
Sunday, May 8, 2011
By and large, the funny book business is full of some pretty nice people.
But like in and "industry", there are some really nasty, rude, self important assholes
out to ruin your day any chance they can get.
The worst of the lot are the so called,"art dealers". That's why, for at least a decade, when I want, or need to offload some original art I have, and will only sell to Scott Eder.
He's fair, intelligent, and while by necessity looks for a deal, plays up front.
Now, if you have ever had a happy experience with anyone else, well my personal opinion
is that you just got lucky.
My dear Karen just got extremely and nastily slammed by a so called "fan site" for doing nothing more than trying to protect my interests. Bless her. I often let to much slip not wanting to make a fuss. It's really nice to have a hundred and eight pound tigress in my corner. Nobody I have ever had a meaningful relationship with has ever been before.
It seems to me,( and I may be wrong, but I don't think so.) that when disputes arise, it really isn't that difficult to, at the least, behave in a civilized fashion.
She simply did not deserve the treatment she got.
Some people are just innately miserable. It truly make me wonder, and most assuredly makes me sad.
Don't waste your time with human Quaaludes.